Being Organized should not be a choice but something that is absolutely necessary. The benefits of staying organized can’t be stressed on enough. It helps us to get through our day effortlessly and focus on tasks and things that are important and matters, be it meetings in our work place or enjoying a cup of coffee with our friend. It definitely helps us to save time that is wasted in looking for things or managing things on a day-to-day basis. Being working professionals it surely is important for us to identify the “time wasters “in our day.
To stay organized and productive at your work place, we need to take steps to tackle places in our house/workspace which can be considered “time wasters”
- Closets- I always urge to start your organizing journey from your closets because that’s a place which not only gives you the quickest results and you can see the benefits of being organized almost immediately but also creates a beautiful visual impact. Get your closet organized in a way where it is easy for you to find the outfit of the day when you are dressing up each day to step out to work. Not being able to find the right outfit and accessories leaves you frustrated and will set a wrong tone to your day which is just getting started.
- Kitchen routine: Get your morning breakfast/ tea/ coffee set up in place. May be creating a meal plan works for you where u don’t have to think everyday about what’s in for breakfast. This also helps u to streamline your grocery/ fruits and vegetables. Get your coffee/tea station organized to get you started for the day. Not having to make these small (yet important) decisions almost every day will save you from decision making fatigue and also reduce the amount of time spent on these things.
- Incoming mails and bills: Always have a caddy/ basket to dump your mails and set aside a time to go through it on a daily / weekly basis so that u don’t miss out on the important deadlines for payments and can also discard the unnecessary stuffs. Creating “tackle your paper” routine will help you being on top of your game always with respect to important dates, payments etc.
Now that we have identified a few of the time wasters at home its time to focus on time wasters at office.
Imagine getting a call and scrambling to find the pen that actually works or looking for a place to take down notes. You find a piece of paper to write down an important information only to not able to find it sometime later. Sounds Relatable?
This is true in scenarios even if we have decided to go paperless. Scattered files which we later either forget the names of or forget to put in proper folders. We spend time looking, tracing them. Having an organized system that works best for you will definitely help you overcome the anxiety and losing time on these fronts.
The way to tackle this:
- Organize your desk top into folders/ sub folders: Create a day folder everyday where you note down your plan for the day, important information you gather on an everyday basis, important leads that gets generated, minutes of a meeting or a call. At the end of the day take 5 minutes to go through the day folder to declutter your files – to understand what is important, needs to go to other main folders or needs to be just discarded. Sort your emails to the moment you get them into relevant folders so that finding them is super easy when you need them.
- To do list will never go out of fashion: Trust me when I say nothing can keep you more focused and efficient than a to do list, and then prioritizing your tasks. (Between I always say the joy of putting tick marks against the accomplished task is something else. I am sure you agree). Also, It helps you to feel good about the things you accomplished that day and also to know where to start off the next day.
- Uncluttered desk- Research has proven that an uncluttered environment helps you to focus on the task at hand and be more productive. Having too many things around is definitely distracting, clutters our thought process and hampers the free flow of ideas. At the end of each day when you switch off your laptop return things back to their place and leave a clear desk to start fresh next morning. For people who are working from home, this also ensures that we are finally ready to wrap up our day and ready to focus on our personal life, and are not getting distracted by an active desktop or unfinished tasks on our to do list staring at us.
- Desk organizers- invest in simple desk organizers like a stationery caddy, paper/file organizers, a peg board or a wire board or cable organizing tools to remain organized and also create a spark joy place for you to work every day.
- Take time to declutter- Take out time each week to declutter your space. Letting go of things that don’t work or are not required anymore will help us never fall short of space on our work desk.
- Make it a routine- it takes sometime for our habits to become a part of our routine, become a part of who we are so that we are doing them effortlessly. We need to consciously put efforts to declutter and organize to make it seamlessly flow in our day-to-day life.
Small habit changes, small mental shifts, change in our attitude towards things can go a long way in keeping us organized and maintain our sanity while we are trying to maintain a work life balance.